Monday, May 25, 2009

Growing Potatoes In Compost Bags

This season I am going to try growing three early red potato plants in compost bags. I have seen this done on Jamie At Home a while back and then saw it again on Down on the Allotment. I thought I would give them a try this year so I can have some red potatoes. Here is how I went about planting them:

First I sprouted some early red potatoes from last years garden.
I was lucky to find these lingering in the crisper, they are a little
small but they should amount to something.

I started the planting by jabbing some holes
in a typical sized bag of top soil for drainage.

I then cut the bag open, removed & stored half the soil and rolled
the top down. I then stuck the seed potato into the bag and topped
that will a few inches of soil.

I then grouped them together in the new lower bed I am putting in
for potted potatoes & tomatoes as well as herb, rhubarb and sunflowers.

Now my only concern is light penetrating the bags and turning the potatoes green. By the time they start growing I will have double bagged them into black plastic bags to stop the risk of having green potatoes.

Once the plants grow about 6" I will roll the bag up, fill it with the remaining soil to replicate hilling and hopefully harvest some early reds in July. If this approach works well I will start them early in the poly tunnel next year for an extra early crop.


  1. I bet this works really well for you. Potatoes are such aggressive growers that I think you could plant them in a trash heap and get some produce! That's one of the reasons they are a staple in my garden - you can hardly go wrong with them and they provide such great nutrition and calorie dense food for the amount of space required to grow them.

  2. I think it will work well too! Should be fun and most easy!

  3. Looks like it ought to work well. And it sure will be easier to harvest them than the traditional digging in the dirt. No shovel cuts!

  4. Oh, it will work alright. I hope you gave them about 6 inches of compost over them though. Potatoes grow above the seed. KitsapFG taught me that after I planted early potatoes in my beds.

    I can't wait to see what a few potatoes in a big bag of compost yields! Good luck Dan! I'm rooting for you.

  5. Very cool!!!! Will visit often for updates!

  6. Hi Dan. I've read about this method before but I've never tried it. It seems like it would work well though. Great use of the space that you plan to turn into another garden area too. Let us know how these potatoes do :-)

  7. This makes the second interesting way to grow potatoes that I have read about today! Tires and bags, how ingenious! It will be interesting to see if this method works for you. I have a potato growing volunteer in my compost bin. Cant wait to see if she provides us with a treat as well!

  8. You've got the idea! I earth up the potatoes for quite a few inches and usually get a good early crop. They can dry out easily, and potatoes are thirsty drinkers!

  9. I am doing potatoes in cheap laundry baskets from the dollar store this year - my kids love it because the leaves of the potatoes are growing through the sides of the basket as I fill them up. I'm sure this will work too.